1. Founded by Amanda Figueroa and Ravon Ruffin in 2018.
nomadic
arts
incubator

Brown Art Ink1

Brown Art Ink is a nomadic community incubator to support the arts ecosystem for artists, cultural practitioners, and communities of color.2 Our work is firmly rooted in community and place as site of memory and cultural geography.

amanda figueroa, co-founder
Amanda believes art is a tool to fight economic injustice. This belief is central to her work as Resource Manager, leading fundraising and other initiatives to unlock institutional resources for artists. She lives in Roxbury and is completing her PhD at Harvard University.
ravon ruffin, co-founder
As Community Manager, Ravon leads our efforts in creating deep relationships with artists and local communities. Her practice is a commitment to the futures of BIPOC communities, online and IRL. She is based in Brooklyn.
2. Brown, Adrienne Maree. Emergent Strategy: Shaping Change, Changing Worlds. Chico, CA: AK Press, 2017.
we operate with three goals in mind

Mission

Ensure opportunities for artists of color to have sustainable art careers with livable wages, fair work conditions, and equitable partnerships with institutions
Invest in the arts at the local-level to support artists, communities, and local economies against displacement and exploitation.3
Advocate for the presence, the needs, and the issues of local artists and communities to be reflected in the public programming and initiatives of large arts and cultural institutions4
We pursue these goals through two types of work

with Artists5

Create paid opportunities to show work in museums, art spaces, and public programs at fair rates
Provide services and resources for amplification, artist statements and resumes, project management, and in negotiating for contracted work -- let artists be artists
Put artists in direct relationship with their local communities as a way to build trust, accessibility, and mutual awareness, through intimate gatherings, community-centered programs, and art talks6

with Organizations7

Deepen their ability to be in alignment with local community and artists needs, through public programming and ethical collaborations, toward the futures of artists and communities of color
Enhance their internal capacity for equitable exchanges with communities of color through professional training, curriculum building, and audience research
3. “The People’s Cultural Plan for Working Artists and Communities in New York City,” n.d., https://www.peoplesculturalplan.org/.
4.“Why Public Art Matters” (Americans for the Arts Public Art Network Council, 2018), https://www.americansforthearts.org/by-program/reports-and-data/legislation-policy/naappd/why-public-art-matters-2018
5. Levinas, Emmanuel, and Philippe Nemo. Ethics and Infinity: Conversations with Philippe Nemo. Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press, 2011.
6. González, Jennifer A. Subject to Display: Reframing Race in Contemporary Installation Art. Cambridge, MA: MIT, 2011.
7. Bishop, Claire, and Dan Perjovschi. Radical Museology: Or, Whats Contemporary in Museums of Contemporary Art? London: Koenig, 2014.
current project

Women-in-Residence

Women-in-Residence documents the histories and trajectories of women of color in the arts and culture fields. Artists, curators, musicians, producers, and art laborers of all stripes have had to discover their own paths to navigate societal and institutional roadblocks.8 In this digital archive, we highlight their presence and retrace their paths so that others can follow in their footsteps.
view the project

Frequently Used Terms

incubator

We are an independent resource for artists and art workers of color, and their local communities. Artists and art workers of color are underfunded and underrepresented in the arts industry. Our work is a practice of care toward their artistic contributions and the preservation of their work.

Women

Our definition of women is inclusive of cis-gender, trans femmes, and women identifying folks. We recognize and seek to address the very specific ways economic injustice intersects with sexism.

women of color / poc / bipoc

We reference Women of Color and People of Color as an abbreviated means to address the collective marginalization of non-white, non-male groups in the US. However, we recognize that Black and Indigineous peoples have a particular relationship to state-sanctioned violence and oppression that is historical and felt today.

Art and Cultural Worker

Professionals who work in the arts industry and contribute to the support of artists, their development, and strive to demystify artistic practices.

community

Our work is in fellowship with community and interdependent to their desires for a collective future. We defer to the expertise, cultural wealth and memory of community members.

archive

Traditionally centers of power, we push against the implicit nature of archives of oppression. This archive is an act of resistance to the silos and exclusionary created by white patriarchal and heteronormative practitioners. See also: Women-in-Residence.

ecosystem

We use the term ecosystem to imagine a practice of art production, arts education, and curation that is anti-oppressive. We believe in the necessity of relationships, collaboration, and equitable exchange, in order to create a sustainable arts ecosystem that supports of color artists, art workers, and communities.

equity

We advocate for artists, art workers, and cultural producers for livable wages, fair work conditions, workplace transparency, and pathways for professional growth.

citation / memory

“Citation is feminist memory. Citation is how we acknowledge our debt to those who came before; those who helped us find our way when the way was obscured because we deviated from the paths we were told to follow.” (Living A Feminist Life (2017), Sara Ahmed)